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Biological warfare: What do you need to know?

HOUSTON, Nov. 5, 2007 Highly infectious biological agents have been used to spread death and despair for centuries. A speaker coming to the University of Houston will address what we might confront if these agents were used today.

Manuel Guerrero, a medical analyst with the Civil Support Readiness Directorate of the U.S. Army North, will speak on Awareness of Biological Agents at noon, Friday, Nov. 9 in Room 130 of Science & Research Building Two. Part of the universitys Todays Health lecture series, the event is free and open to the public.

His job involves training and evaluating nuclear science officers in operations and the detection of biological and toxic industrial chemicals with analytical equipment to assist in rapid response of terrorist incidents. He also instructs physicians, nurses and other medical personnel to recognize signs and symptoms of biological and chemical warfare agents and teaches them triage and medical management.

The talk at UH will address the management of biological casualties, with the intent to bring an awareness of common and uncommon biological agents. He will cover what biological agents are, their history, signs and symptoms, and how theyre transmitted and affect us. Included in the discussion will be a breakdown of bacterial biological agents such as anthrax, viruses such as smallpox and toxins such as botulinum.

Guerrero received his undergraduate degree in biology from Iowa University and his graduate degree in human resources/psychology from Webster University. Prior to his current position, he served in the U.S. Army Medical Corps, where he retired with an honorable discharge after 24 years. During this time, he acquired vast experience setting up M.A.S.H. units and instructing medical emergency first responders.

Started in the fall of 2004, the Todays Health lecture series, sponsored by the UH Libraries and the UH College of Pharmacy, spotlights prominent professionals who address topics of importance to UH pharmacy students in a way that is accessible to general audiences. Past topics have included the relationship between traditional and modern medicine, the difficulty of staying current on the risks and benefits of new drugs, the use of stem cells in regenerative medicine, the practice of using tailor-made medications based on an individuals genetic information and the ins and outs of lawsuits in the pharmaceutical industry.

For more information about the Todays Health series, contact Nelda Cervantes, the College of Pharmacys library supervisor, at or 713-743-1242.

Manuel Guerrero, Medical Analyst, U.S. Army North
UH Libraries
UH College of Pharmacy

Awareness of Biological Agents lecture
Todays Health series

Noon to 1 p.m., Friday, Nov. 9

University of Houston
Science & Research Building Two, Room 130
Entrance 14 off Cullen Boulevard


Contact: Lisa Merkl
University of Houston

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